, attached to 2014-07-08

Review by JordanThePhisherman

JordanThePhisherman Midway through the first set, it became evident that the band was having trouble staying in sync with each other. Through the attempted peaks of Taste and Walls of the Cave, it seemed as if they were all one step behind one another. Would this blemish on the band’s routine linger on into the second set? Well, it’s hard to say. The Fuego jam provided some of the most unbearable moments of the start to of tour while also featuring some noteworthy interplay that fueled a relentless groove.
The jam began with some acceptable and appropriate noodling that has become a staple of 3.0. We’ve all accepted that it takes some time for the band to reach a sweet spot which, at our expense, requires patience. However, after switching to a major key, the band jumped the gun and attempted to reach a peak that simply wasn’t a sufficient platform for a peak. Mike prematurely committed to his effects and Trey was all set to bring the jam home. Page wasn’t in sync and well..Fishman was reluctant to lay down a steady beat. Without a steady beat, there is absolutely no potential for a steady jam. And that was the problem. This segment was cringeworthy and hard to listen to. The band was disconnected on all four sides and was sometimes embarrassing.
Contrary to 3.0 customs, Trey’s ruthless strumming revealed that he was dedicated to weaving the band into a sweet spot that could revive the jam. Mike, Page, and Fish caught onto Trey’s memo and they were finally all in sync. Finally working their way into a respectable groove, Fishman enlightened the beat with the addition of cowbell (I think?) and other funk tricks to perfectly set up a nice foundation for Page’s solo. Page truly brightened the jam by repeating a certain sequence of notes that made it a memorable jam. This continued for a fair amount of time with Page leading the band. It surprised me that Trey did not take a solo following Page. The band dissolved the jam, transitioning into The Line.
Now, I would really like to emphasize that a jam’s length does not make a jam a good one. This Fuego has topped any other jam (timewise) at this point in the summer. I’d like to mention one jams.. 8/15/12 Rock and Roll: An a terrible jam that meandered and went nowhere. Of course, people raved about it since it was 25 minutes. Quality over quantity; that was a very overrated jam. I really hope people don’t rave about this Fuego. The first half was unbearable but by the second half they found a sweet spot and the jam picked up and found a worthwhile groove. But still, the first half of this jam hinders the jam’s reputation as a whole. No matter how great the second half of this jam was, the first half will be engraved in my head.
The sound wasn’t the best where I was seated but I imagine it will hold up on the audio as I heard it. I prefer to review shows without listening back. That way, I can describe it as how I remembered it and it forces me to think.
The rest of the second set somewhat redeemed itself with the exceptions of a botched BDTNL intro and a jarring ripcord into Ghost from Tweezer. Trey clocked right out of that Tweezer jam once he finished his Type I solo. He started to play an uncomfortable rhythm that signaled Ghost which looks great on paper (Tweezer -> Ghost). Accordingly, Trey tried to seamlessly transition into Ghost, which ended up being anything but seamless. At least he was ripcording into Ghost and not something like Joy. Ghost featured no flubs but it still wasn’t perfect. 2001 was a nice surprise and Harry Hood > Tweezer Reprise was appropriate. The second set was high energy for the most part but there was some really ugly parts. A bad Phish show is still better than any other concert I could’ve gone to last night. I’m generally the one who defends the band and raves about jams but I believe it is important to review negatively when there is a weak 26 minute jam that is a misnomer for an immaculate 26 minute jam that reaches another universe. Someone’s gotta spew the truth. I don’t even think the band was proud of that Fuego.
Per usual, I still enjoyed myself. I look forward to tonight’s show and hope for the best.


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